P90X3 Total Synergistics Review

So today marked my official leap into the world of P90X – P90X3 to be exact, and I’m pretty content with my first toe dip into the water.  My husband and I are doing P90X3 together, which makes it nice and even more fun. Having a workout buddy (particularly one who gets your jokes and pain while working out) is a huge motivator to stick with any program, so I’m ecstatic that he’s on board.

P90X3 has four different workout calendars you can follow – Classic, Lean, Mass, and Doubles.  We opted to do the Classic version as it’s our first time doing any type of P90X workout.  The first workout in the Classic calendar is, you got it, Total Synergistics.  Basically, it’s a total body workout that makes you use multiple body parts to complete each exercise. You need a set of dumbbells and a pull-up bar to complete the workout.  Alternatively, there is a modifier who uses bands instead of the weights/bar.  They also recommend that you use a mat.

From first glance, the cast is ripped – and I mean ripped. Wowza.  You know this will be no joke.  There are two females (both strikingly fit) and a male who lost 20 lbs in the test group (also quite fit).  I didn’t catch their names, although Tony does introduce them at the beginning (I think I was just in awe of their fitness levels).  The set is stylish (my dream gym) and the quality of the video excellent.

The DVD starts with a short, basic warm up of jogging in place, jumping jacks, and stretches, then we get straight into the different exercises.  Because this DVD requires weights, there is a printable workout sheet that you are highly encouraged to use during the workout to record your reps and weights so that you can move forward throughout the program each week.  There was a nice mixture of weighted exercises (3 hop presses, glamour hammers, squat rockers, etc.), body weight exercises (push-up/side arm balances; crawly plyo push-ups, warrior squat moons, etc.), core exercises (boat plows, flip flop crunches), and bar exercises (pull knee pulls,  chin-up circle crunches). It is then followed by a short cool-down at the end. If you want an exact break down of each exercise, you can easily find that elsewhere and I won’t bore you with the details.

The trickiest part of the video, for me, was knowing what to do for each exercise.  In retrospect, I probably should have previewed the exercises before starting, as it took me a few seconds to watch them do each activity before I could dive right in. I have a feeling next time we do this video, it’ll flow more smoothly, as I’ll know what to expect (as opposed to scrunching my forehead and waiting for a demonstration). Also, I wish that Tony would have provided some suggestions for weight amounts for the weighted exercises. In Chalean Extreme, Chalene always mentions what she’s using and often mentions what the other cast members use, which helped me gauge what to pick for my own weight.  However, next time, I’ll have a better idea of what to choose based off of my own recorded weights/reps.

One thing that struck me about this workout was how flipping fast it went.  It was half over before I even realized it. I know Focus T25 goes by fast, but this literally flew by, which, to me, is something I look forward to (I like working out, but I LOVE being finished!). I’m not entirely sure why it flew by so quickly, but likely because of the variety of exercises, the pace of the video, and the fact that the exercises were somewhat complex and required lots of focus (seriously…just try doing the warrior squat moons and you’ll see what I mean).  It was challenging, but not too over-the-top (i.e. I didn’t want to quit at all, but did want to see myself improve). Many of the moves were new to me, which kept it interesting and fun. Overall, I quite enjoyed the DVD – it didn’t leave me dying and dripping in my own pool of sweat like T25, but it still gets the work done in a fun, fast-paced way. I liked that the focus was on strength, as T25 seems to be more cardio-based. The other thing I absolutely loved about this workout was the pull-ups. I still have to use the pull-up assist get-up, but I’m stoked to see myself improve throughout and can’t wait until I can start doing the pull-up combinations without the assist.

Finally, I also enjoyed getting to see Tony as a trainer. He’s charming in the video, but not too over the top. My heart still belongs with Shaun T, but I am enjoying Tony’s personality and look forward to the next 89 days!

Please remember that I am not a doctor or a nutritionist or fitness expert.   All information I discuss on my blog is intended for inspiration and educational purposes and is not intended as a medical diagnosis or treatment. Before making any changes to your own health and fitness, I highly recommend speaking with your doctor.


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